Ministry strives to boost the exchange of content with China

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Ministry strives to boost the exchange of content with China

Korea’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism on Wednesday announced a number of measures to boost content exports to China, the world’s third largest content market after the United States and Japan.

The ministry said it will seek to create a multilateral cooperative body with China to discuss ways to facilitate the exchange of a variety of content between the two nations - books, films, music and television programming, to name a few. It will also address easing regulations in China and raising awareness about copyright standards there.

The envisioned body, the Culture Ministry said, will involve Korea’s Ministries of Culture, Sports and Tourism; Science, ICT and Future Planning; the Korea Communications Commission; as well as China’s Ministry of Culture; its State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television; and its National Copyright Administration.

“[The idea] was first raised at a meeting of vice culture ministers from both sides in October,” said Lee Seong-eun, from Korea’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, referring to the Korea-China Culture Industry Forum held on Oct. 31 in Beijing. “China responded positively. … But we are not sure when the entity will officially launch.”

The Culture Ministry also said it will expand funds for Korea’s small content companies; hold briefing sessions to help Korean companies make inroads into China; and operate a database so that Korean firms can receive more information about China’s content market.

The Culture Ministry said it aims to raise content exports to China - which amounted to $1.2 billion in 2012 - to $4 billion by 2017. The figure for 2013, estimated to be around 1.5 billion, will be confirmed by the end of the year.

China’s content market, recorded at $130.9 trillion in 2013, is a tempting market for Korea, and the Korean government believes it will continue to grow and, in a few years, possibly take over Japan as the world’s second largest.

However, Korean officials and businesses have long expressed concerns about the difficulties of such a venture, citing China’s strict regulations as well as copyright infringement. For instance, according to Chinese regulations, for Korean shows to be distributed online, a license from the Chinese government is required. Additionally, China only allocates about 30 percent of online broadcasting space to overseas content.

BY KIM HYUNG-EUN [hkim@joongang.co.kr]



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